Intelligent flashlight will literally show you the way

Flashlights are so 20th Century. Be it the incandescent type that popped up very early on, or LED models with came around in the 90’s, there’s not much excitement to the devices. But [Sriranjan Rasakatla] is doing his best to change that. This is his WAY-GO Torch, an intelligent flashlight (a Smart Light?) that will not just light your path, but overlay useful data on it.

At the front of the unit a pico projector is housed on a jointed assembly. This allows the device to project data on the ground in front of you. Using a digital compass and GPS module, it can show the polar coordinates, guide you on your way, or provide information about the buildings around you. The motorized mount provides image stabilization based on IMU data. Check out the demonstration video after the break. It shows general functionality in the first part of the clip, with some footage of the stabilization system at about 4:30.

This really does seem like it came right out of a Sci-Fi novel. It’s useful, but the complexity makes it surprising that [Sriranjan] was able to pull it off. We wonder how the battery life is on the device, but it can’t be any worse that one of those really huge flashlight builds.

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Building infra red light sources with regular lights

[Oneironaut] sent us another IR hack. This time it is a writeup on the best ways to create IR light sources from regular lights. Since normal flashlight bulbs emit a broad enough spectrum to include visible light and IR light, this basically comes down to filtering. [Oneironaut] explores different light sources and different materials in depth, along with great pictures to show his results. This is a great resource if you’re needing to do some night vision for cheap.

Zinc sulfide glow power at home

Further solidifying her mad-scientist persona, [Jeri Ellsworth] is making glow powder with household chemicals. When we saw the title of the video we though it would be fun to try it ourselves, but the first few minutes scared that out of us.

To gather the raw materials she puts some pennies in a bench motor and files them into powder. From there it’s trial and error with different cleaners and tools to create just the right dangerous reaction to get the chemical properties she’s looking for.

Check out her experiments after the break. And if you find you’re wanting more, go back and take a look at her EL wire fabrication process.

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Switchmode LED flashlight upgrade

When [Neelandan]’s cheap flashlight’s internal rechargeable battery died, he scrounged for a replacement. Ultimately, the brightness of the light suffered with his new battery, taken from an old cell phone since he had dropped the voltage a bit. Upon inspection he saw that he would have to swap the individual resistors for each lamp to get the desired brightness again. This wasn’t really acceptable as he would have to repeat the process if he used another re-purposed battery with different specs. Instead, he added a new circuit to supply constant brightness until the voltage drops below 2.7 volts. We love to see hardware resurrected, even if it is just a cheap LED flashlight.

Spider Fire flashlight upgrade

fire

[PodeCoet] sent in this mod he did to a Spider Fire flashlight. These things are unbelievably bright, they use Cree LEDs that are so intense, they can ignite paper. [PodeCoet] notes that they run on fairly expensive batteries. Instead of buying some rechargeable ones, he decided to customize and hack his torch. He added a custom charging circuit and a Lilon battery as well as a boost-converter circuit and a status LED.  We like the idea of having a rechargeable lamp, but he has lost his water proofing. If anything, you should go there to see his nicely done smd charger pcb as well as the pictures of his test run, burning some paper.

As some people have pointed out in the comments, this flashlight could not have started that fire. This one could though.